Liberia is located in the southern part of West Africa on the Atlantic coast, bordered by Sierra Leone to its north, Guinea to its northeast and Côte d'Ivoire to its east. The country, which is about the same size as Tennessee, is mostly covered by thick tropical forests.
Liberia was founded by freed American slaves, supported by American Colonization Society, in 1822. The country was originally called Monrovia, after U.S. president James Monroe, but became Africa's first republic - the Free and Independent Republic of Liberia - in 1847. The country's original name lives on in the capital city, Monrovia.